Checklist for Departments
As the image shows, inviting a J-1 scholar involves ten steps and multiple players. OIPS has created a checklist that will serve as your guide throughout this process. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to email Irina Chizhova, Assistant Director for Faculty and Exchange Visitor Services, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here to download the Checklist for Departments 2022.
Click here to download J-1 Visiting Scholar Invitation Letter (*optional).
The process can take 3-4 months:
- 1-2 months to prepare J-1 application packet (department)
- 2 weeks to process DS-2019 request (OIPS)
- 1-2 months to obtain a J-1 visa (J-1 scholar)
Taxation for international visitors:
- US sourced income is potentially taxed and reportable*
- US income is taxed based upon the person’s tax status and the income type
- Anyone with reportable income is required to have a Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer ID Number
- Anyone receiving income from Mason should visit the International Tax Office
Click here to learn more about US taxation for international visitors.
*U.S. sourced income is any payment from sources within the U.S. Examples include wages and salary income paid by a U.S. employer, payments for services performed in the U.S., scholarships paid by U.S. Grantors.
Please review the following before you submit J-1 Scholar Request Form
The Two-Year Home Residency Requirement
If the exchange visitor will be government funded (U.S. or home government) and/or if the exchange visitor’s academic field is on the "skills list” for his or her country, he/she will be subject to the two-year home residency requirement.
The “skills list” is a county-by-country list of disciplines in which skills are needed by each country; the U.S. Department of State draws the list up in cooperation with the countries that appear on the list. For more information please visit: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/study/exchange/waiver-of-the-exchange-visitor/exchange-visitor-skills-list.html
Exchange Visitors who are subject to the two-year home residency requirement are not eligible to change to another nonimmigrant status within the U.S. and to leave the U.S. and return in either H-1B status or legal permanent resident (“green card”) status unless they have first returned home for two years or obtained a waiver of the requirement.
According to immigration regulations (22 CFR S62.14), J-1 exchange visitors and accompanying J-2 dependents are required to maintain medical insurance with evacuation and repatriation coverage that meets U.S. government minimum requirements beginning on the start date of the J-1 program (indicated in item 3 of the DS-2019) continuing to the end of the J-1 program.
Minimum coverage must provide:
- Medical benefits of at least $100,000 U.S. per accident or illness;
- Repatriation of remains in the amount of $25,000 U.S.;
- Expenses associated with medical evacuation of the Exchange Visitor to his or her home country in the amount of $50,000;
- A deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness.
Note: There cannot be any breaks or lapses in insurance coverage even if an exchange visitor travels outside the U.S for an extended or short period of time during the J program.
J-1 Scholar Request Form
As stated in the Checklist for Departments, you will need to complete the J-1 Scholar Request Form (often referred to as J-1 Department Request Form) and gather required supporting documents.
A J-1 applicant must be supported substantially by funding from any source other than personal or family funds. Personal funds may supplement but not substitute for institutional, governmental or agency funding. Personal funds from individuals do not qualify.
October 2022 Important Information about Funding:
OIPS has determined that the minimum funding necessary to meet the J-1 visa requirements is $2,100 per month (vs $1,800) for the exchange visitor, $1,200 for J-2 spouse (vs $600) and an additional $600 per month for each child (vs $400). The calculation is not based on the real cost of living in Fairfax or Arlington Counties. These also estimates do not include travel to or from the visitor’s home country or within the U.S, entertainments, health insurance or other discretionary expenses. Scholars should take into consideration that these estimates are very conservative and should factor in individual financial requirements when making plans to come to GMU.
New (post October 1, 2022) minimal funding requirements:
- J-1 scholar: $2100/month ($25,200/year)
- J-2 spouse: $1200/month ($14,400/year)
- J-2 child: $600/month per child ($7,200/year)
J-1 Scholar Request Form Instructions:
- Please complete all questions on the J-1 Department Request Form and return to email@example.com. Please allow 3 weeks for preparing the DS-2019 Form, immigration document for J-1 visa application. Scholar should allow 4-12 weeks (highly variable) for obtaining a visa at US embassy/consulate in home country.
- Obtain signatures of the responsible faculty member and Department Chair for Short-Term Scholar category or the Dean for Research Scholar category
- Attach Exchange Visitor’s Curriculum Vitae
- Attach financial support documentation (see part C)
- Attach a copy of passport identification page (see page 5 for information about dependents)
- Attach English Language Verification Form
- Attach Brief Research Statement
- Attach Export Compliance Form
- Attach Proof of J-1 and J-2 health insurance (for extension only)
If you have any questions, please contact Irina Chizhova at firstname.lastname@example.org.